With all the of the attention being given to Governor-Elect Chris Christie this past week, it is no wonder that one of the biggest stories coming out of Monmouth County last week was the creation of an Ethics Board by the Board of Chosen Freeholders.
The Democratic majority voted to create this watchdog panel over Republican opposition, who thought that it was not necessary.
The creation of this ethics panel fulfills a pledge by the democrats to bring responsible and honest government back to Monmouth County four years after Operation Bid Rid rocked the foundation of the County.
Republican opposition to the ethics board is astounding considering that Operation Bid Rig happened under their watch and along with about two dozen county officials that were arrested, long time Freeholder Director and “Godfather” of the Monmouth County GOP Harry Larrison Jr., was also indicted for corruption. At the time the Freeholder Board was governed by all Republicans and the county government was comprised of people who owed their positions to patronage, cronyism and favoritism.
So it is no wonder that Republicans Rob Clifton and Lillian Burry, think that the idea of an ethic board is a bad one. They say that it would be too costly and have too much power over county operations that would be better left to the County Prosecutor or State Attorney General, preferring instead to leave the ethics policing to the Freeholders themselves.
Just as astonishing is the fact that the Asbury Park Press is not totally on board with the idea of an ethics board being created.
After all, it’s not like they did such a bad job watching over themselves before, do ya think?
The ethics board is a good idea, one that should have happened a couple of years ago but the County GOP was and still is against the idea, that someone else will be watching over there shoulder.
It will be interesting to see come January if the newly formed, GOP controlled, Freeholder Board will rescind the resolution that created the Ethics Board. It wouldn’t suprise me in the least if they did.